Witty wordplay guaranteed to tease and tickle.

READ REVIEW

I SCREAM ICE SCREAM!

A BOOK OF WORDLES

This playful collection of 14 ingeniously illustrated “wordles” introduces readers to homophones.

Opening with a definition of wordles as “groups of words that sound exactly the same but mean different things,” the text immediately offers examples “I scream/ice cream” and “heroes/he rows.” Commencing the game, it challenges readers to guess the second wordle of each subsequent pair before turning the page. Guessing “rain, dear” for “reindeer” may be obvious, but other wordles prove more challenging. Guessing “icy” for “I see” is not a stretch, but a second option of “Aye, sea!” may be, without the visual context of a pirate ship. Indeed, the zany, clever multimedia illustrations, with their deceptively childlike figures drawn in stark, black outlines, create a humorous visual context for each wordle, spinning surprising links between verbal juxtapositions. “A family affair” is visually represented by a line of people wearing assorted headgear. Its wordle, “a family of hair,” is visually cued with the same line of people raising their chapeaux to reveal wild hair. Likewise, the illustration for “princess cape” of a creepy princess in a cape trying to kiss a knight tied up in yarn is followed by the wordle “prince escape,” showing the foiled princess throwing up her arms as the knight’s foot disappears through a door.

Witty wordplay guaranteed to tease and tickle. (Picture book. 5 & up)

Pub Date: May 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4521-0004-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Chronicle

Review Posted Online: March 6, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2013

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Thank you, Gerald and Piggie. We’ll miss you

THE THANK YOU BOOK

From the Elephant & Piggie series

Piggie is “one lucky pig,” and she’s determined to make sure she thanks “everyone who is important to” her in this, the final Elephant & Piggie book.

Gerald is sure his friend will forget someone—“someone important”—but Piggie assures him, “It will be a THANK-O-RAMA!” Piggie proceeds to thank the Squirrels for their great ideas, Snake for playing ball, and the Pigeon “for never giving up.” Piggie thanks and thanks: “I am a thanking machine!” She thanks character after character, even the Flies (“Any time, dude!”), as Gerald continues to interject that she’ll forget “someone VERY important.” Finally Piggie runs out of thanks, and by this time Gerald is steamed. “I goofed,” Piggie says in itty-bitty type, before lavishing thanks on Gerald. But that’s not whom Piggie forgot to thank! A classic Willems tantrum later, Gerald reveals the “someone important”: “Our reader.” Of course. “We could not be ‘us’ without you,” says Gerald, earnestly looking out from the page, and Piggie chimes in, “You are the best!” As Elephant & Piggie books go, this isn’t one of the strongest, but it is a validating valediction to fans of the two characters, who have won Willems two Geisel Medals and five Honors. Yes, Gerald and Piggie have ushered countless readers into literacy, but as they rightly note, reading is a collaborative act.

Thank you, Gerald and Piggie. We’ll miss you . (Early reader. 5-8)

Pub Date: May 3, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4231-7828-6

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 10, 2016

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This can’t be the last we ever hear of the Legendary Alston Boys of the purely surreal Logan County—imaginative,...

THE LAST LAST-DAY-OF-SUMMER

From the Legendary Alston Boys series , Vol. 1

Can this really be the first time readers meet the Legendary Alston Boys of Logan County? Cousins and veteran sleuths Otto and Sheed Alston show us that we are the ones who are late to their greatness.

These two black boys are coming to terms with the end of their brave, heroic summer at Grandma’s, with a return to school just right around the corner. They’ve already got two keys to the city, but the rival Epic Ellisons—twin sisters Wiki and Leen—are steadily gaining celebrity across Logan County, Virginia, and have in hand their third key to the city. No way summer can end like this! These young people are powerful, courageous, experienced adventurers molded through their heroic commitment to discipline and deduction. They’ve got their shared, lifesaving maneuvers committed to memory (printed in a helpful appendix) and ready to save any day. Save the day they must, as a mysterious, bendy gentleman and an oversized, clingy platypus have been unleashed on the city of Fry, and all the residents and their belongings seem to be frozen in time and place. Will they be able to solve this one? With total mastery, Giles creates in Logan County an exuberant vortex of weirdness, where the commonplace sits cheek by jowl with the utterly fantastic, and populates it with memorable characters who more than live up to their setting.

This can’t be the last we ever hear of the Legendary Alston Boys of the purely surreal Logan County—imaginative, thrill-seeking readers, this is a series to look out for. (Fantasy. 10-12)

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-46083-7

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Versify/HMH

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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